About the event
THE SIGN PAINTER
Directed by Viesturs Kairiss
NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
Ansis (Davis Suharevskis) can’t help but obey orders. As a sign painter in a small Latvian town in the early 1940s, even his color palette is not of his choosing, based as it is on orders from the Nazis. When not out painting the town, he spends time frolicking with Zisele (Brigita Cmuntová), a wealthy merchant’s feisty Jewish daughter. Though he purports to be in love, he cannot ask for her hand in marriage due to her religion. As Nazism rises throughout Europe, tensions mount in the town. Zisele, already in a dangerous place due to anti-Semitism, decides to join the Communist party, which some neighbors consider an overt threat to the regime. Meanwhile, Ansis meets Naiga (Agnese Cirule), the charming, yet capricious new woman in town. Before realizing it, he finds himself caught up in a love triangle set against the backdrop of the Second World War.
With its stylish, vertiginous cinematography and first-rate production design, THE SIGN PAINTER is an illuminating and incisive portrait of what Eastern Europeans had endured throughout the 20th century when living under multiple governments’ jurisdiction.